Well, it’s not really “news” since it is simply reconfirming what we already have seen in recent research.
There are studies recently shared at Alzheimer’s Association International Conference last week that show that there are five factors that have been shown to significantly reduce the risk of developing dementia later in life.
Both studies pointed to:
A healthy diet
At least 150 minutes a week of moderate to vigorous physical activity
Light to moderate drinking (alcohol)
Engaging in mentally stimulating activity
Engaging in all five decreased risk of Alzheimer’s by 60% compared to those who only had one healthy behavior. Those who added only one of the habits above saw their risk lowered by 22%!
It is becoming more and more clear every day that the decisions we make about our lifestyles at every point in our lives have implications downstream. There is no point at which we are “too late” to add healthy behaviors, and when we do add them the impact is noticeable.
Judaism teaches us that we are to pursue life. This means we cannot simply wait around and see what is in store for us health-wise. We must at every moment, make healthy decisions; not only will we sense the difference now, but in the years ahead as well.
CNN reported on the new global guidelines from the World Health Organization (WHO) about preventing dementia.
The guidelines reinforce what many of us in the Fitness Industry and who have an interest in brain biology already know. Many of the gimmicks that are advertised to help stave off dementia are just that–gimmicks that are not proven to really work.
For some time now, experts in brain biology have been able to cite only one factor that is known to reduce the chances of developing dementia: cardio exercise. But wait, what does the heart have to do with the brain (sounds like a country music song)? It’s actually not that complicated; the more blood that we get pumping throughout our bodies (which is what cardio exercise does), the more blood that flows to the brain; the more blood to the brain, the healthier it is!
What the WHO guidelines add is that there are now a few other factors that also can contribute to preventing dementia: “regular physical exercise, not using tobacco, drinking less alcohol, maintaining healthy blood pressure and eating a healthy diet — particularly a Mediterranean one. “
Just one more reason to head to the gym…or outside…or to that piece of cardio equipment in the basement. Not only is it good for your heart, it is good for your brain too!